Roadtrip to Shiner

This week the humidity finally dropped and the weather is starting to feel like Autumn.  I’ve continued to make progress with my tune-up and with each little change I find it very valuable to drive the Alfa for a while to see how the adjustments actually affect performance.  Not just a drive around the block.  I prefer a hundred miles or more at this point.  I changed the spark plugs last weekend and I’m seeing a nice improvement with my backfiring issue.  More about that later; but I find things continue to improve as I drive the beloved jewel like she was meant to be driven.  Higher RPM, higher speed, with smooth shifting and transition through the gears.

This morning I took a drive west down I-10 to Flatonia where they have the great Czhilispiel festival at the end of the pepper harvest season in Texas.  We grow a lot of peppers and chilis in The Great State of Texas.  Great event with awesome beer, chili, BBQ, and Czech food!  A great little town with a lot of heart and Texas tradition.

Every drive is better than the last and this one allowed for a long run at 90mph without having to lift too often.  I could stick to a car in the left lane and hang back two or three car lengths at speed.  The exit for Flatonia off I-10 allows you to turn south and head to Shiner, Texas.  Another awesome town with a lot of history.

If you say Shiner, most people will think beer.  Shiner Bock… yes please.  Shiner beer is not from a brewery called Shiner, contrary to popular belief.  It’s made in the same traditional way Kosmos Spoetzl brewed it in his Texas born and raised brewery – Spoetzl Brewery.

Leaving Spoetzl Brewery and continuing south sends you to old HWY 90 just a half mile or so down the road.  A sharp left and I was headed east, back from where I came.  Old 90 was the I-10 of yesteryear and has the same speed limit for the most part.  The only difference is you get to feeling like it’s your person highway there’s so few cars, and you pass through some of the old towns along the way.  I was able to set my own pace for the most part and found a real improvement in high RPM, high gear driving.  My backfire issue is slowly clearly up and I’m gradually getting comfortable with running it for extended periods at higher and higher RPM.  I honestly think she needs these runs like an allergy plagued teen needs a neti pot!

5000rpm in 5th gear = 105mph.


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